Tumor starvation strategy is a new cancer treatment strategy, in which cutting off cancers’ nutritional supplies is used to stop cancer cells. It seems to a promising strategy since the growth of tumor cells need large amounts of nutritional supply.
Some cancer patients who hear about tumor starvation strategy wrongly believe that they should eat less or even nothing to starve cancer cells to death. The article gives three misconceptions about nutrition in cancer.
1. Eating less can help starve cancer cells to death
Unlike normal cells, tumor cells divide, grow rapidly and often steal the nutrients from normal cells. If cancer patients choose to eat less or starve themselves, normal cells will lack nutrient sources to support body functions, which leads to a decline in body immunity and raise the risk of bacterial infection.
2. The better you eat, the faster the tumor grows
The purpose of nutrition intervention is not to treat tumors, but to maintain body functions and reduce the risk of treatment interruption through food intake.
There is no need for cancer patients to worry that high-fat food intake will help fuel the growth of tumor cells. Tumor cells get their energy mainly from sugar and they rely less on fat. A high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet is desirable for cancer patients.
3. One kind of “almighty” food is enough
Foods are different in nutrients and contents. For example, eggs are rich in protein, fish contain high unsaturated fatty acids, coarse grains are high in fiber, and pork and beef are good sources for iron. Only eating one ” almighty” food will lead to unbalanced nutrition intake.
Nutrition intervention is an important part of cancer treatment, which both doctors and cancer patients should consider a priority. A balanced and healthy diet during cancer can help improve patients’ survival and quality of life.